arse test for bloggers and academics

Stanford’s Bob Sutton has taken his bestselling book to new heights, he now has an online “arse” test. [Here’s Brayden’s complimentary review of the book.] The test is short and unscientific, but fun nonetheless.

If you take the test with an eye toward blogging or academia, it can get interesting:

The question on the right could describe some of the comments I’ve gotten on blog posts or in seminars (I admit, I’ve had my moments too.)

Other yes-no questions include:

  • “Are you quick to point out others’ mistakes?” [Think seminars, blog posts…) Boy, it surprises me how within minutes any mistake (logical or otherwise) I may have made in a post (or, seminar) is vetted by some genius. However, I really don’t have any qualms with this.
  • “You constantly interrupt people because, after all, what you have to say is more important.”
  • “You feel surrounded by incompetent idiots – and you can’t help letting them know the truth every now and then.”
  • “You have the feeling that people are always very careful about what they say around you.”
Let’s see, would you want these qualities in a fellow blogger or academic colleague (starting from the top):
Probably no, yes, depends, maybe and maybe. Is some optimal amount of “arse”-ness perhaps then the
missing x-factor needed to succeed in academia? Arse-ness probably is mostly in the delivery — after all,
you want someone sharp, someone who catches mistakes, etc — but that doesn’t make for an idiot unless
they rub it in your face.
Here’s the rest of the 24-question online “arse test.” Any guesses on what the average arse-ness score of the orgtheory crew might be? Uncomfortably high is my guess, but we’re all academics so that’s our excuse.

Written by teppo

June 12, 2008 at 11:49 pm

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